Author Archives: Andy Daer

Countering the fear factor

Our ancestors were hunter-gatherers who rarely met anyone they didn’t know, and were probably wise to be cautious when they did. In modern cities we are used to seeing strangers by the thousand, but our genetic inheritance is still there, and it is easy to re-awaken the atavistic fear that people who look or sound different might be dangerous. Stirring up racism is part of a simple principle of leadership; tell people there is an external threat and set yourself up as a powerful and angry leader. If the people fear the external threat they will welcome an aggressive masterful …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 109 Comments

Giving voice to the millions who didn’t vote in the Referendum

What happened to the 11.9 million who didn’t vote in the referendum last year?  According to the pro-Brexit lobby’s version of ‘democracy’ they no longer exist.

Non-voters may have been unregistered, uninterested, or too busy to pop in the polling station, and others reckoned their single vote would never matter much and didn’t bother, but there is a core who were confused by the lies and misinformation and didn’t know which way to turn, after a campaign that was shoddy on both sides.

In the last few months the effects of the Brexit vote have started to become clearer.  The pound immediately lost value, banks and other financial institutions are starting to move to other European countries, there are big doubts about the future of aero-space and our foreign-owned car industry, EU citizens are already leaving and creating labour shortages in key industries and services, anti-foreigner rhetoric is making the UK an unfriendly xenophobic place, and forecasts predict a long-lasting downturn in the economy, causing tax revenue reductions which would far outweigh the mythical £350m a week gain.  Brexit champions thrived on stirring up anti-EU feelings but had no plan for the future, apart from a low-tax, low-tariff Poundshop Britain which would horrify most of us, including leave voters.  They had boasted we could easily do advantageous deals with economic super-powers like the USA and China, but the reality is stark; trade agreements take years to negotiate, and we would come off worst in deals with ‘America first’ USA and the equally self-centred China.

Despite all this, the Brexiters claim another referendum would be “anti-democratic”, because “the people have spoken.”  We all seem to be forgetting that 11.9 million didn’t speak.  

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 20 Comments
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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarJoe Bourke 23rd Feb - 2:19am
    The Layfield Commission on Local Government Finance (Layfield Committee, 1976) came to the view that there should be major changes in the financing of British...
  • User AvatarJoe Bourke 23rd Feb - 1:18am
    A harrowing tale of real distress for these parents, Kirsten. I echo your conclusion that " We need a joined-up approach to disability provision –...
  • User AvatarJoe Bourke 23rd Feb - 1:00am
    Keynes did offer us some advice on how best to manage the public finances. To find out what is was it is best to go...
  • User AvatarJoeB 23rd Feb - 12:28am
    Layla, as she so often does gets to the heart of the issue in saying " the idea that university should be free for everyone...
  • User AvatarAndrew McCaig 23rd Feb - 12:27am
    nonconformistradical I said "people who did not pay fees". That is everyone who went to university before 1998. Lots of people. I did not say...
  • User AvatarRoland 23rd Feb - 12:26am
    Germany has managed to abolish tuition fees as they weren’t working for the economy. And they are also finding that having abolished them, that also...